Tuesday, January 25, 2011

The year of the Pistolero or NOT?

With news of his arrival at Saxo Bank camp and a possible 1 year ban, I started thinking about a year with Pistolero.  Much like the Yankees, Duke basketball, The New England Patriots or Lance Armstrong, not many are on the fence about Conta, you either love him or hate him.  You watch to see him attack and win, or you hope he will not just lose, but get beaten!  Here is our take on 2011 with or without the Spaniard.

Say hello to his little friend!

Another year with Contador:

1. A pissed off Contador will be focused and ready to prove he did not need a Spanish Big Mac to win races. Alberto will attempt to win all 3 Grand Tours in one year. He will attack everything, including his shadow, as he tries to prove he is innocent.
2. Contador vs Schleck (on the road, not on another horrible commercial).  Each plays their part in this feud, with Conta looking smarter and just as strong.  Say what you will, but Andy got played on and off the road at the Tour last year.  Both are needed to make this the modern Hinault vs Lemond; Lance vs Jan battle. If Andy gets punked again, we just might make the "SHUT UP GIRL PARTS" tee @DivasTourFrance requested in his honor.
3. Contador being attacked by everyone that ever dreamed of a podium.  Let's face it, he has his work cut out for him this year.  Many have ridden with him and have an axe to grind and others don't like the way he raced the TDF. Other riders HATE Riis and the way he does business.  All non-Spanish riders might take turns putting him under pressure.
4. Marketing, marketing, marketing (Specialized, SRAM, Sidi, etc). Images of Conta riding, sleeping, levitating etc... Spanglish commercials aplenty.
5. The Pistol salute on Mountain Top finishes (while wearing the crotch eagle on his kit).  This gesture usually gets one of 2 comments "Man that is so cool!" or "Finger guns looked stupid when we were 6 and still do!"
*They might rig up a remote "wing" gun that the crotch eagle can fire when Conta posts up.
6. The tone of fans on the road would be interesting.  Will the majority cheer as he has been "vindicated" or boo like they did at Vino last year?
7. A more flamboyant TT helmet than last year.  Rue Paul thought that thing was loud; 2011 would be even more out there. Picture an eagle face on the front with aero-carbon feathers to match the eagle on Saxo kit.

A year without Pistolero (if he is suspended)

1. 3 stage races wide open for the likes of Schleck, Basso, Evans, Van Den Broek, Menchov, Nabali and others.
2. NO FINGER GUN SALUTES! More hate this than love it, so we say this is addition by subtraction.
3. US Bike Company Feud scoreboard is updated to read "Trek 1 and Specialized -1,000".  If you follow this US bike company rivalry, you will appreciate the impacts of the signing of Andy Schleck and/or Alberto Contador.  Major $'s lost on marketing for Specialized as they have to re-think everything from print ads to their booth at Interbike. Even a year later if/when he comes back, it will be like trying to market the love child of Floyd and Ivan Basso. Can you sell that? Especially in the US?
4. Chalk up one more for Espana as they are far and away the worlds best at doping in sport (or just getting caught) and trying to drag their feet during the process.
5. 2nd Winner of the TDF in 5 years to lose the jersey either means a cleaner sport or less careful athletes. This also means more stupid questions and coverage from the ball and bat crowd.
6.  Andy Schleck gets a pass on having to grow a pair for another year. He got played last year, and thinks Conta is his BFF.  Meanwhile the Spaniard laughs all the way to the podium and the bank.  Without Alberto racing, how can Andy show he has the stomach/stones to be a great champion?
7. Bjarne Riis finally loses the ability to get a sponsor.  Riis has proven over and over again he is bullet proof (Mr. 60 doped himself, had riders busted in Puerto, and still gets sponsors) this would be the end of his streak.

Thanks for reading! You can use PROMO CODE: HBBLOG for 20% off all tees @ www.hbstache.com

Monday, January 24, 2011

EXCLUSIVE: Contador talks about hair test for Clenbuterol

Today in Mallorca, Alberto Contador arrived to join his Saxo Bank-Sungard team for their training camp.  He was met at the aiport by a reporter from Rueters.  The reporter wanted to discuss recent developments with his postive test for Clenbuterol.  We have received a transcript of the impromtu press conference:
Reporter:  "Alberto are you aware that Detlef Thieme, director of Germany's WADA-accredited lab in Kreischa told the AP that their is a way to check for Clenbuterol in hair samples?"

Contador (In English) "I did not hear about a hair test in my race radio, it was not working correctly." "I did not see this Detlef have an issue as I was attacking all out."

Reporter: "Alberto this news came out today not during a race." "Were you aware of this test?  Is that the reason for your hair cut?"

Contador (fading to Spanglish) "Test, I'm not sure of a test...umm..my hair cut corte de pelo? Bjarne told me to umm...No Se?"
Contador's handler steps in to explain. "Alberto was visisted by the Director of the Vuelta who was traveling with his personal barber.  He offered his services to Alberto and he accepted."  "Next question?"

Reporter "This seems odd, that you shaved your head on the day the news of this test came out. Are you sure you did not do this to prevent further testing?"
Contador's handler. "Alberto did nothing wrong in this matter and has always liked the looks of Levi Leipheimer even if he has never respected him as a cyclist"

Contador whispers in his handler's ear...

Contador's handler "He means he likes the style of Levi's head but not in a Ricky Martin way, not there is anything wrong with that way."

Contador walks off saying "No Mas..O me da mi pistola"

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

All Time Great Cyclists

Check out this video with a few of our favorite cyclists.  And the one that inspired this tee Angel of The Mountains.

Thanks for checking out the video.  Use PROMO CODE: TDU for 20% off www.hbstache.com

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Floyd Landis #greymanrod Retirement Options

Floyd Landis shocked the cycling world today with the announcement of his retirement.  Just to recap the last few years, he started a charity that turned out to be a for-profit scam, wrote a non-fiction book (hard cover of course), he became a "whistle blower", a snitch/rat for the feds and helped take down a team that wanted to help under privileged kids.  Floyd's comments today made it sound like he had hadn't accomplished anything since 06, but Cobra Commander, Darth Vader and Voldemort would disagree.

While he is not exactly a typical retiree in his mid 30's, Floyd has many options to fill his time.

A Kid Rock impersonation show in Branson, MO.  

The marquee could read something like, "Not straight outta Compton or a trailer, HE IS STRAIGHT OUTTA THE VILLAGE!"  Floyd is already 80% there with the look; just add long greasy hair, a wife beater, a little side kick and he is money!

Starting a lycra-clad biker gang, similar to the Sons of Anarchy, they would be known as the Saddle Sores.
They could do whatever needed, for the right price, as they cruise Callie on the their bikes in all black kits.  They would also be on a mission to loot/damage any Radio Shack, US Postal mailbox, or TV showing the Discovery Channel they come upon.

        Member's would include:
         Floyd "Whistle" Landis President
         Alberto "Guns" Contador VP
         Alejandro "Pitti" Valverde as Sergeant at needles 
         Oscar "Baby face"Sevilla
         Joe "Mailman"Papp 
         Michael "Fried Chicken" Rasmussen  
         Several other former Master racers that have tested positive.

Bonnie D. Ford's partner on the new VH1 show "Dancing with a Burnout"  

This show looks to be a big hit filled with Celebrity re-hab graduates and many fallen stars (Brigette Nielson, Verne Troyer, Kathleen Turner and Flava Flav).  Bonnie D. Ford and Floyd seem to have quite the chemistry based on many a late night interview over a bottle of Jack.  With the choreography of Greg Lemond, these guys should tear up the floor like they did the ticker on ESPN 8.

Floyd Landis Performance products with the tag line "I know what works!"
Pre-ride beverage: This will get you going for longs days of training (caffeine equal to 13 cappuccinos)

Testosterone Chamois creme: Who needs a patch when you have the creme! It's as refreshing as dumping 80 bottles over your head on a long breakaway. This stuff gets things moving; apply straight to the junk for that extra training kick.

Based on some side effects: We now offer a lip waxing kit and chest hair removal strips for your female sexual partners.

*does wonders on saddle sores and some forms of STD's

Recovery drink:  This cocktail includes (trace amounts of Cera, a dash of Cenbuterol, cloves, Bull semen, Cobra's blood, a touch of lime and Jack Daniels)

The Landis Method (5 dvd set):  Proven and established techniques for becoming "that guy" in your chosen profession.

Floyd will teach you:

  • "Special" IT skills- allowing you to add/delete to company documents, emails, and records
  • "Perjury Smurjury" exposing the myth about lying in court
  • Under the bus method of deflection and evasion
  • Methods for telling the "truth" as you blow the whistle - "Proof? Who the F*^% needs proof"
  • How to find a bitter mentor with an axe to grind 
  • How to get/use others money for your cause (books, meet and greets, lemonade stands)
  • How to blame "it" (it can be anything from a parking ticket, tax evasion or a DUI) on your former boss, star coworker or uber smart Asian friend.

No Gold watch or yellow jersey but Floyd is riding off into the sunset (riding unless he sold his bike for beer money)

Thanks for reading check out our tees @ www.hbstache.com

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Cycling Wiki leaks: LEOPARD TREK hotel demands

We received this memo via a fan of our tees  (He is a kind man with a wonderful mustache that is a hotel employee in France).  We were shocked when we read it and felt we must share this information.

REQUIREMENTS (For hotels privileged enough to host our team):
General Hotel:
  • Minimum 2 Dolphins must be swimming in the pool
  • Water in the hotel must be either Evian or Vittel (not in bottles; actually flowing through the pipes)
  • Any statue or bust must be wearing a scarf
  • Each room should have a Bjarne Riis dartboard 
  • At least 2 rolls of toilet paper imprinted with the Saxobank-Sungard logo (per room)
  • All non-attractive or non-fashionable employees should be sent away during our stay

Rider Specific needs:
Fabian Cancellera
  • Roman style sandals must be at his bed side upon arrival
  • Gladiator and Spartacus “Blood and Sand” (Seasons 1 & 2) bluerays must be in his room.  (We do not care that season 2 has not been aired yet.)
  • 1 quart of Mobile 1 synthetic 5W-30 oil (do not ask questions about this)
Jens Voigt:
  • A bed of nails 
Andy & Frank Schleck:
  • Bunk beds (Andy gets the top bunk)
  • A medium sized stuffed dolphin must be placed on the pillow of top bunk
  • Photo Frame saying “My Best Friend” or “BFF” with the picture of Andy and Contador we supplied should be placed on dresser.
  • Two pair of red, white and light blue striped footy pajamas (size extra long and thin)

Stuart O’ Grady: 
  • 1 albino wallaby with leash 
  • 2 cases of Foster’s Australian beer/per night
  • a didgeridoo player should be available upon request
Linus Gerdemann:
  • A minimum of 9 mirrors in his room (So he can enjoy his own beauty)
  • ShamWows instead of towels (The German’s always make good stuff)
  • The entire David Hasselhoff music library on vinyl 
Brice Feillu:
  • A statue of Napoleon should be placed in his room (minimum 3 meters in height.)
  • Each morning he wants to be awaked to the French National Anthem played by a small child with a flute (age of child may vary between 6-9 years of age)
Thanks for reading.  You can go to www.hbstache.com and use PROMO CODE: TDU for 20%  OFF on all our tees!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Wiki: Genus of LEOPARD TREK

Here is the OFFICIAL communication of the Team named after a large Feline and Trek.

leopard-trek how to’s
This the email that was recently sent out by the new team leopard-trek team:
It’s been an exciting week for Trek as we announced our co-title sponsorship of LEOPARD TREK. The anticipation behind this launch is understandable, considering the fire power in the roster. There will undoubtedly be a significant portion of media coverage surrounding the team as the season kicks off next week at the Tour Down Under.
Please follow these naming standards when referring to the team in the media:
The team name is LEOPARD TREK. Please do not insert the word “Team” before LEOPARD TREK, in writing or conversation, as that is not part of the official name.
Please do not hyphenate LEOPARD TREK.
In written communication, LEOPARD TREK must be set in all caps.
In spoken communication, please use the appropriate pronunciation: LAY-oh-pard Trek.
INCORRECT: The new Team Leopard Trek includes…
CORRECT: The new LEOPARD TREK team includes…
INCORRECT: Leopard-Trek was presented to the media…
CORRECT: LEOPARD TREK was presented to the media…
INCORRECT: Trek announces sponsorship of Team LEOPARD TREK…
CORRECT: Trek announces co-title sponsorship of LEOPARD TREK…
Thanks for your help in establishing the proper team name standards. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.

To be clear I wanted to give the Wiki definition of a LAY-oh-pard:
Leopard (pronounced/ LAY-oh-pard) Is from the European branch of the Panthera PetShopis Boyis, a member of the Euro Cheeky family and the smallest of the "big cats" in the genus of Panthera, the other three being the Tiger, Lion (of Flanders), and Jaguar.  The Leopard is concentrated in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg with some spreading out as far as Germany and Spain.  

Compared to other members of the Euro Panthera Family the Leopard appears more Metro-Sexual.  It will often present wearing a scarf, very tight trousers and a blazer. This does not apply to the oldest and meanest of the Leopards, Jens Voigt who would never be caught dead in any of those items. Sounds of a pack of Leopards can be best described as the mixing of Depeche' Mode and Pet Shop Boys. 

While hunting, the Leopard will appear in a retro style black, white and minty hue of lycra.  The Swiss Leopard known for his strength and ability to go hard over long rough courses is described as having a "MOTOR" by some. He is known to rip the legs off his prey and leaves them behind to die a long painful death. The Alpha Leopard appears to be the thinnest of the herd and can be described one day as having a "Stomach Full of Anger" and the next being mounted by his prey.  We will see how the "LAY-oh-pard" pack does hunting in UCI races around the globe.  What ever you do, DO NOT PROVOKE them by mis-typing, mis-saying or even mis-thinking their name. THERE IS NO TEAM IN LEOPARD (TEAM)!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Pro Cycling 2011: Things I’ll Be Listening For by our guest @dwuori

We asked and he said yes, so here is our Guest Blogger Dan Wuori (For more follow @dwuori on Twitter):

Last week the gang at Handlebar Mustache weighed in on the things they’ll be watching in pro cycling during the year to come. Now I love to watch cycling, but for me listening is at least half the fun – especially when the legendary Phil Liggett is on the mic. And if you ride yourself, I’d be willing to bet you’ve had Liggett provide some imaginary commentary along the way.

I’m not the world’s strongest cyclist (I’m a solid Cat. 7), so my own “inner Phil” is often forced to modify his “Liggettisms” to better fit my performance. For example:

“He’s going to have to dig deep if he wants to bridge this gap. Too bad his suitcase of courage got lost at LaGuardia and didn’t make the connecting flight.”
 “He’s an absolute beast of a man. And by beast I mean a big one, like a rhino or something! He could really stand to lose a couple of pounds, don’t you think Paul?”

Come to think of it, my inner Phil is a very nasty man…nothing like the actual Mr. Liggett. But I digress.

Anyway, 2011 promises a whole new batch of Liggettisms and since I’ve become skilled at putting words into his mouth, I thought I might share a few phrases I think will come rolling off Phil’s silver tongue during the year ahead. (Note: For best results, read these aloud in your own Liggett voice. You know you have one.) 

Liggettisms 2011: An HBStache Sneak Peek

10. “There’s a rider off the front wearing the jersey of Team Sky…or is that Garmin-Cervelo? No, no… wait… that may be the nearly identical jersey of Leopard-Trek. We’ll just have to wait ‘til the finish and hope he’s carrying some form of photo identification.”

9. “Pulling hard is Jens Voigt – a man who uses embrocation only to prevent harm to his bike saddle.”

8. “Yes, I know it’s not really pronounced ‘Team Leaky Gas.’ What’s your point, Paul?”

7. “It’s been an unforgettable day here in the Alps…perhaps second only to the day I drove Marco Pantani to the mall to get his ears pierced.”

6. “Oooh, that was a nasty crash! Well, so much for Cav’s dental work.”

5. “Yes, you could say that Riis, Nygaard and Brailsford have all cultivated a certain look. No Larry or Moe here, Paul.”

4. “And there’s the sprinter Robbie McEwen. He began his career in purple – playing the role of ‘Jeff’ in The Wiggles - but is now happy to be wearing the colors of Team Radio Shack.”

3. “For a man who spent the off season motor pacing behind a goat, Alexander Vinokourov looks surprisingly strong.”

2. “Say what you will about Brad Wiggins. He says he spent much of 2010 with his head up his own backside, but will you look at what it’s done for his time trial position?”

1. “Alberto Contador is the Tour de France champion yet again. It appeared for a time that his hopes might be dashed, but that was before WikiLeaks released the name of the cow’s asthma doctor.”

Happy 2011 everyone…and Phil, if you’re reading, take it easy on me.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Dopers do suck, but they have great excuses!

I consider myself an optimistic realist; I hope we go all year with no doping scandals but that probably won't happen.  I wanted to do my part to help out the UCI ahead of the season.   After 2010 where the yellow jersey was involved in "where's the beef" gate, anything could be used as an excuse this year. So here are some of the possible excuses for a doping positive this year.

North American rider excuses:

  • "Im not sure what happened, I went to an Native American spiritual ceremony while training in (Arizona, New Mexico, etc) and must have taken something during my spirit walk"
  • "I stopped through Las Vegas on the way to the Tour of California and I spent some time at the (fill in the blank) strip club.  I must have gotten trace amounts or something from kissing the girl I was with" 
  • "I took Xtreme Burn Fuel/Muscle Mass Machine 7/etc.  supplement I got at GNC."
  • "I don't know what it was?  It came with Floyd's old BMC I got at a garage sale for $5.  Thought I would try it since it worked for him"
  • "I drank a large amount of Mountain Dew/Wild Turkey/Red Bull/OJ after the stage, maybe that was it"

Western EU Pros (Mostly Spanish) excuses:
  • "I was the only one that had the a Unicorn paella at our training camp in Majorca, it must have been tainted" 
  • "I had a root canal that had complications, and I required a transfusion"
  • "I slept with Ricardo Ricco's ex and I must have had a contact positive"
  • "I know my name and mother's maiden name and passport number are on the blood bag you found but, I am innocent  (aka Spanish) so I will allow myself to keep racing"
  • "I shook Valverde's hand when I saw him at a cafe."
  • "I was at a David Hasselhoff  concert with one of my German teammates.  He said to try this since the Germans always make good stuff." 
  • "Is it possible to get anything from dolphins that might affect the test? I swam with them a lot in the off seasons"

We want a clean sport as much as anyone, but we know that positive tests are inevitable.  We are hoping for the best, but expecting the worst excuses!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

The Angel of the Mountains

We have an update to our "Angel of the Mountains" tee.  For those that are not familiar with the man that owned the nickname here is a bit of info:

Charly Gual (1932-2005)

Tour de France
General Classification 1958
King of the Mountains 1955 & 56

Giro d' Italia
General Classification 1956 & 59
King of the Mountains 1956 & 59

He earned the nickname with his high cadence climbing style and dominance in the mountains in the 50's.  He is regarded by many as one of the best climbers of all time.  Raphael Geminiani said Gaul was "A murderous climber, always the same sustained rhythm, a little machine with a lower gear than the rest, turning his legs at a speed that would break your heart, tick tock, tick tock, tick tock." The journalist Pierre About wrote that Gaul had "Irresistible sprightliness [allegresse]", that he had "The air of an angel for which nothing is difficult."

  In a fitting tribute to Charly Gaul this tee is now in true Luxembourg colors.

Pro Cycling 2011: Things we're watching part 1

As previously stated, 2010 was a wild year, and we are think 2011 will be equally entertaining.  Here are a few things we are watching for this year.

Team Omega Pharma Lotto:

While they consistently sport one of our least favorite team kit/helmet combos, they have our attention this year. Phillipe Gilbert is always in the mix and that won't change in 2011.  Many people questioned the future of this team with the departure of Cadel Evans.  2010 proved to be a solid year for Omega Pharma Lotto.  Jurgen Van den Broeck had an amazing Tour last year and has come completely out of the shadow of Cadel Evans.  If he picks the right race to focus on like the Vuelta or perhaps the Giro, he can end up on the podium. Van den Broeck posted a 7th at the Giro in 08, 15th at the Tour in 09 and 5th at the Tour last year.  He can climb and TT and is a true threat as a GC contender.  André Greipel got away from  Cav and is now THE sprinter for this team.  It should be interesting to see Griepel vs Cav with all the other usual suspects mixed in.  This battle could end with a wheel swinging encounter!

Will The Shack be relevant?

With an aging AARP roster, the Shack team was built to win in say, '06.  I feel losing Taylor Phinney was the biggest blow this team could have taken. With the recent addition of the very vocal and still quick Robbie², things got a little more interesting.  2010 was a very forgettable year for this team overall.  They got more press from time on the ground, fights with race organizations and "jersey gate" than they did from being on the podium. With sponsorship in question for the next season we bet Johan is able to get a few results with Levi, Kloden, Popo and Jani.  We can see this team capable of winning a few smaller stage races like Paris Nice, California or Colorado.  They should be completely free to hunt for stages at the Tour (IF they get in).  Our wish would be for Levi to focus his season on winning the Vuelta.  This race has been very good to Levi, it put him on the map and is the Grand Tour he can win.

Have we seen the best of Tom Boonen?

Tom had a really rough year in 2010, with a string of 2nds and stinging losses to Cav and Fabian.  Quick Step has had some big changes for 2011, including our favorite kit so far.  Some feel the addition of Gert Steegmans will offset the loss of Stijn Devolder.  We don't see it that way, it looks more and more like it is all on Tom for both Flanders and Roubaix.  Anything can happen in these races; if Fabian has a mechanical or stops to drink a beer, Tom has a great shot.  Looks like his knee is back to 100% and if he is mentally right (no underage girls, blow and or car wrecks) - Tom is still one hell of a bike racer. If he gets off to a rough start and Lefevere gives him Stijn treatment in the press, we vote Boonen "most likely to lay a beat down on his director".

Will Basso REALLY try to win the Tour or just keep saying he wants to?

Looks like we won't really know until May what the green team is planning.  First reports were that Nabali would go for the Giro win and Basso would focus on the Tour.  Now it sounds like Basso will ride in both in his attempt to win the Tour.  We have to admit we are a bit baffled at the latest trend to ride the Giro and the Tour since it hasn't worked out for anyone since Pantani.  Love him or hate him, Lance was dialed in on the Tour and showed people how to win it.  Contador followed that plan and minimized his racing (almost to a fault last year) to arrive in July for the win.  Not sure why Basso doesn't go all in and give the Tour his complete focus.  He has 2 Giro wins (1 that is believable) and 0 Tours.  It seems like a no brainer to give his complete focus on Le Tour, but then again, we're not Italian.

Will Taylor Phinney be influenced more by Cadel or by George?

Looks like he will be in the right races for his 1st year as a pro, with a chance to win one.  Most likely Taylor will win a TT and not a road race.  The big question as we see it, will Taylor learn more from George or Cadel? For most of his career Cadel's memoir could have been titled "Riding for 2nd: Confessions of a Wheel Sucker".  That all changed after his World's win and Cadel showed us, that when he attacks and takes risks he can win big races.  We like Hincapie as much as anyone, we think he is one of the greatest US cyclists. That said, he rides classics races like there is a chance the leaders will get hit by a bus.  George has not put in a dig in a classic in years, and we hope Taylor does not adopt the wait and hope strategy.  Tom Boonen learned a ton from riding with Hincapie and we hope the same can be said for Taylor Phinney.  We believe "The Great White Hope" can win multiple classic races if he takes his chances and rides for the top step, not the top 5.

Jens Effing Voigt:

This is probably his last year (for real this time) but why watch Jens 2011?  Because he is JENS, the Chuck Norris of cycling! Once again he will rip the legs off the peloton and give us plenty of one liners.  As long as Voigt is racing it will be a race worth watching!

Jens rockin the ultra compact frame.
 We want to see great racing all year, and we love the Tour de France. But, what we really hope for is that some of the GC contenters will give up their yellow jersey dreams.  We would love to see the likes of Christian V, Mick Rogers, Levi, or Cadel Evans add a Giro or a Vuelta to their palmarés.